Unfamiliar familiars?

David Silberstein davids at kithrup.com
Sat Feb 22 13:06:33 PST 2003

On Sat, 22 Feb 2003, Mark A Mandel wrote:

>On Sat, 22 Feb 2003, S Lumley / s piotto wrote:
>#I don't think that witchcraft is all that common,
>I agree with you. I don't think most Easterners are witches. Witchcraft
>seems to be Noish-pa's source of income in the Easterner ghetto of
>Adrilankha, which strongly suggests that it's not something available in
>most households, at least at his level of ability.
># 	 despite what we see in the books.
>Eh? What suggestions do we see that it's common?

Perhaps because Vlad is a witch, his wife knows some witchcraft,
Vlad's father is a witch, Vlad's Dragaeran friend Morrolan is a witch,
and Morrolan even has a circle of witches to help him out (whom, oddly
enough, Vlad has never met despite being in charge of Morrolan's
castle's security (you'd think he would have been everywhere in
Morrolan's castle)).  There's also Arra, and the hundreds of witches
mentioned in tPotD.

While witches are not shown to be common, there's a lot of focus on
main characters who *are* witches.

># I believe that Morrolan might be a more powerful witch (warlock?),
># but then again
>Definitely "witch". That's the word used of Morrolan.

That's something that annoyed me slightly in tPotD.  Here we are given
a standard word -- "witch" -- that applies to both genders, and this
book comes along and introduces the term "warlock".  However, it
occurs to me that it might be Brust pointing out that Paarfi uses the
wrong words sometimes (like that two-story "bungalow", early in
tPotD)(or perhaps Steve is mistranslating, heh).  So Paarfi uses a
wrong word to indicate a male witch, and Steve shrugs and "translates" 
that as the word "warlock", and says, "Hey, blame Paarfi.".